ABC hack protests anti-Islam interview


blog The ABC has confirmed that one of its websites has been hacked following the airing earlier this month of an interview held by Lateline with anti-Islam campaigner Geert Wilders. We’re not planning to link to the actual database which has been broken into and published online, or to those who claim they perpetuated the hack, but the ABC’s statement is as follows:

“Overnight the ABC was made aware that an ABC television program website was hacked. The website relates to the ABC television program Making Australia Happy, which aired in late 2010.

At this stage, we are still investigating the details of the breach. However, we do know that it has exposed the name, username and a hashed version of the password that audience members used to register on the program website. As soon as the ABC was made aware of this activity the site was shut down.

This breach originated at an overseas location and an activist has claimed responsibility for it. The ABC will be in contact with audience members who have been directly affected.”

Honestly, we’re not sure what to make of this. An anonymous Internet activist on the left protesting against a controversial interview by breaking the law and exposing the accounts of innocent forum users, and Geert Wilders on the right preaching against one of the world’s largest and oldest religions (and the ABC giving him a platform to do so). It’s like it’s stupidity from all angles. Can’t we all just grow up?


  1. I think they’ve gone too far.
    They guy is a complete loon, but sometimes you need to show the loons to give you an example of how bad it can get (before it gets *really* bad and you need to cover it during the news with graphic/disturbing images warnings)

    • I agree.

      If they didn’t “give him a platform” then there would be cries of censorship. Let people hear his bigoted views.
      Hacking the ABC website for it is ridiculous.

  2. Unfortunately, poor Aunty has gone looney and is inviting the looney to share her loony leanings with her. Ever since she hooked up with that Mark Scott, she’s been this way. I think he doing something to her as she used to be really well balanced.

    • Maybe this appearance was to balance the semi-regular airings Catherine Deveny gets on Q and A to preach anti-Christianity?

        • Agree completely Karl. All organisations (including religion) should be open to criticism.

          It seems that when it comes to filtering, many people’s views are digital filtering = bad, analogue filtering = good.

          • I don’t care about the Christian’s, but leave us Pastafarians alone. The Flying Spaghetti Monster loves us all and I know Catherine Deveny would have no issue with us like she does the Christians. But then, maybe we haven’t forced her to conform to our belief that she has to party.

  3. > preaching against one of the world’s largest and oldest religions (and the ABC giving him a platform to do so). It’s like it’s stupidity from all angles. Can’t we all just grow up?

    Why is it taboo to criticise or protest religions?

    This line of reasoning (or lackthereof) is brimming with logical fallacies:
    Argument to moderation: “It’s like it’s stupidity from all angles.”
    Poisoning the well: (implied) Geert Wilders is a loony therefore criticism of religions is bad.
    Argumentum ad populum: “preaching against one of the world’s largest … religions”
    Appeal to tradition: “preaching against one of the world’s … oldest religions”
    Appeal to ridicule: “Can’t we all just grow up?”

    Why should religions get special exemptions from criticism?

    This appears to be caused by wishful thinking utopian political correctness, that is unwilling to face facts that, despite being held sacred by many, religions have many grounds for criticism.
    I’m disappointed that you are perpetuating this kind of groupthink.

    • +1

      It is currently an impossible situation for rational debate, though – if you are critical of religion generally you’re labelled a heathen atheist by all religions and universally attacked by all religions, religious organisations and individuals, whose right to attack you is supported by populist governments and your views condemned, marginalised and censored. If you want to make your arguments more accessible, specific and palatable you can focus on a single religion such as Islam, Christianity or Judaism, but then you’re in danger of being labelled and marginalised for more specific discrimination (such as antisemitism), and you’ll still be criticised and condemned by all major religions and their supportive governments anyway, because unchallenged criticism of any religion could leave the way open for similar criticism of any other, threatening the entire house of cards.

      It really is time we (society) recognised that criticism of someone for something they can’t change and that can’t forcibly affect others is generally unacceptable (race, disability, gender) but criticism of any ideology, thought, rationale, idea or opinion is fair game, particularly when that can affect the lives of others (bigotry, racism, religion), has the potential for political influence and a history of prejudice resulting in murder and genocide, even sanctioned by enacted laws. In fact, please demonstrate where atheism has ever called for the killing of individuals or genocide of millions – aethism is opposed to dogmatic religious ideology, not the people who hold those views. Yet various religions call for the murder and subjugation of those who do not follow their specific religious doctrine, justjfied by classifying ‘heathens’ as being subhuman and therefore as subject to extermination as any other animal nuisance.

  4. Of course people should be allowed to present particular points of view.

    It seems that those who want to silence anybody they disagree with are usually among the most vociferous promoters of their own right to be heard unrestricted.

    Free speech means just that, and as long as we all have the same right to point out the things said by others that we disagree with, there’s no possible damage to our level of liberal democracy.

    • We don’t have free speech, but regardless the ABC is supposed to be impartial, so it’s only fair they get all opinions no matter how much the mass populous may disagree with them.

  5. I grew up in a country town and thanks to the socialist government we have in this country, We had ABC TV where the commercial channels didn’t want to go, Kind of reminds me of what is going on now with the NBN.
    I do think though that The ABC has been a lone shining light of impartiality and balanced reporting, Something very rare in the worlds media today! Quite likely something that this person from Anonymous would not be able to comprehend!

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